Nissan’s mass market zero-emissions electric vehicle, which has already been rolled out in Europe, Japan and North America, is on show at the 2011 Joburg Motor Show.
The first in a series of electric vehicles (EV) to be produced by the Japanese motor manufacturer, the LEAF (short for Leading, Environmentally friendly, Affordable, Family car) has already won accolades as 2011 World Car of the Year and European Car of the Year.
Mike Whitfield, Nissan SA’s managing director, says, “We are dedicated to lowering our carbon footprint to ensure a sustainable future. This is reflected in on-going technological development to reduce the impact of our vehicles on the environment.”
The medium-sized hatchback, with space for five, is powered by a 24 kWh compact lithium-ion battery pack is located under the vehicle floor for packaging, without compromising cabin or cargo space. The LEAF has 80 kW of power and 279 Nm of torque that is said to offer excellent acceleration. Regenerative brakes recharge the battery during deceleration and braking, which helps contribute to the Nissan LEAF’s driving range of more than 160 km on a full charge – a distance Nissan say should satisfy the daily driving requirements of more than 70 per cent of the world’s driving population.
Is the Nissan LEAF going on-sale in South Africa? If government comes to the party in terms of infrastructure, we could see the LEAF on local roads as soon as 2013.